PhD in Education

Educational Policy, Leadership, and Management

Program Details


Minimum Degree Requirements

  • Doctoral Writing Assessment (0 cr.)
  • Foundations course (5 cr.)
  • Specialization courses (30 cr.)
  • Doctoral support courses (6 cr.)
  • Research courses (20 cr.)
  • Completion of the Doctoral Capstone
    • Prospectus course (5 cr.)
    • Doctoral Capstone (5 cr. per term for a minimum of four terms)
  • Four PhD residencies to equal a minimum of 16 units


Walden students have up to 8 years to complete their doctoral program unless they petition for an extension.

In general, students are continuously registered in the dissertation/doctoral study course until they complete their capstone project and it is approved. This usually takes longer than the minimum required terms in the dissertation/doctoral study course shell.

To complete a doctoral dissertation, students must obtain the academic approval of several independent evaluators including their committee, the University Research Reviewer, and the Institutional Review Board; pass the Form and Style Review; gain approval at the oral defense stage; and gain final approval by the Chief Academic Officer. Students must also publish their dissertation on ProQuest before their degree is conferred. Learn more about the dissertation process in the Dissertation Guidebook.

For a personalized estimate of the number of your transfer credits that Walden would accept, call an Enrollment Specialist at 855-646-5286.


Admission Requirements

Program Admission Considerations: A master's degree or higher.

General Admission Requirements: Completed online application and transcripts. Please note that the materials you are required to submit may vary depending on the academic program to which you apply. More information for international applicants.

Tuition and Fees

Curriculum Requirements Cost Total *
Tuition-Coursework 66 quarter credits  $730 per quarter hour for coursework credits $48,180^
Tuition-Doctoral Study/Project  20–120 quarter credits $730 per quarter hour for dissertation credits $14,600–$87,600*
Technology Fee   $170 per quarter $2,040–$5,440*
Residency Fee Four Residencies $1,420 each (virtual)
$1,520each (in-person: travel, lodging and other expenses are additional)
Estimated Range:     3-Year 8-Year
      $70,500 $147,300*+
      (assuming completion in a 3-year timeframe) (assuming completion in an 8-year timeframe)

These are ranges of what a student can expect in terms of time and tuition cost to complete a degree. It does not include other fees, nor is it adjusted for tuition increases over time. Walden faculty has concluded that generally students who do not complete their program in eight years are unlikely to complete and only allow students to exceed that time frame when a student petitions for an extension and provides good reason for the delay and assurances that obstacles to completion can be overcome. Time is calculated using the time allowed for each semester or unit that the student completes. Students are encouraged to work continuously during the program so as not to extend the time needed to complete the degree as work can become stale and students lose focus. Students who earn two grades of “Unsatisfactory,” who repeatedly drop a course before a semester or unit has been completed, or are unable to complete in the eight year time frame, should expect that they may be dismissed from the program. Walden believes that it is in the best interest of a student who is unable to complete the degree in the stated ranges to strongly consider withdrawal or obtaining a lesser degree.

Time to completion and cost are not estimates of individual experience and will vary based on individual factors applicable to the student. Factors may be programmatic or academic such as tuition and fee increases and/or the student’s transfer credits accepted by Walden; program or specialization changes; unsuccessful course completion; credit load per term; writing, research and editing skills; use of external data for their doctoral study/dissertation; and/or individual progress in the program. Other factors may include personal issues such as the student’s employment obligations; care giving responsibilities or health issues; part-time vs. full-time enrollment; leaves of absence; and/or other personal circumstances.

Tuition and fees are subject to change. Books and materials are not included. Students may incur additional costs for remedial writing assistance, if necessary.

^This assumes students successfully complete their coursework on the first attempt.

Based on a 3-year minimum completion requirement and an 8-year maximum timeframe as outlined in Walden academic policy.

*Tuition and fees will be higher if students petition to extend the 8-year maximum timeframe or choose to take more expensive elective courses.

+Tuition and time to complete may be reduced if transfer credits are accepted, or if you receive grants, scholarships or other tuition discounts. For a personalized estimate of the number of your transfer credits that Walden would accept, call an Enrollment Specialist at 844-642-0198.

Paying for Your Education

Our Enrollment Specialists can help you outline a plan and find resources for funding your education.


Speak with an Enrollment Specialist to learn about our current tuition savings.

Program Outcomes

Specialization Learning Outcomes

In addition to the core program learning outcomes, graduates of this specialization will be prepared to:

  • Develop strategies to address P–20 education’s political issues that are collaborative as well as research- and data-based.
  • Apply economic principles to inform decisions about education policy.
  • Evaluate critical issues in education leadership from an ethical, legal, and governance perspective.
  • Advocate for or against P–20 educational initiatives.
  • Apply best practices in education utilizing culturally responsive education perspectives, leadership theory, and management strategies.
  • Act as an agent for organizational social change utilizing foundational principles of educational policy, leadership, and management.
  • Demonstrate the ability to conduct research that positively impacts social change.


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